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The Best Movies Of The 2000s

Updated June 22, 2020 68.0k votes 4.4k voters 127.9k views457 items

List RulesFilms that had their debut theatrical run between 2000 and 2009

List of the best films released between the years 2000 and 2009, the era frequently referred to as the '00s or the "aughts." Though the actual decade is typically counted from the first year (2001) through the tenth (2010), for movies, it seems easier to organize it differently. (Most people don't consider movies released in 1990 to be '80s movies, for example.) So, what are the best 2000s movies? 

The following list mixes films from every genre, and originating in nations from all around the globe. (European cinema seems overall more predominant, with a number of French, British and Italian films making appearances, but several Asian productions - from China, Japan and Korea - are also represented.) There is also a significant overlap of popular mainstream films (such as Christopher Nolan's "Dark Knight" and Peter Jackson's blockbuster "Lord of the Rings" trilogy) along with more art house or niche titles. Interestingly, a number of films that were not massive box office successes or particularly noteworthy on theatrical release have grown in esteem over the years. David Fincher's "Zodiac" was seen as a bit of a let-down when it came out, and was overshadowed by other notable 2007 releases like "No Country for Old Men" and "There Will Be Bood," but now outperforms most of the director's other work in this decade. Similarly, the low-key comic adaptation "Ghost World" from Terry Zwigoff came and went in 2000 and now makes a high appearance on this list. (This may owe in part to the ongoing popularity of Scarlett Johansson, for whom "Ghost World" provided a breakthrough role.)

Vote for your favorite '00s movies on the list below, and if you want to have more of an impact on the rankings (and maybe sneak some of your own favorite films on there), re-rank the list and make your own version.

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  • 1
    Monsters, Inc. is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list The Best Movies Of The 2000s
    423
    124

    Monsters, Inc.

    Billy Crystal, John Goodman

    Released2001

    Directed byDavid Silverman, Pete Docter, Lee Unkrich

    Monsters, Inc. is a 2001 American computer-animated comedy film directed by Pete Docter,... more on Wikipediaamazon buy button

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  • 2
    The Lord of the Rings: The Ret is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list The Best Movies Of The 2000s
    1,152
    510

    Released2003

    Directed byPeter Jackson

    The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King is a 2003 epic fantasy drama film directed by... more on Wikipediaamazon buy button
  • 3
    The Lord of the Rings: The Fel is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list The Best Movies Of The 2000s
    1,170
    577

    Released2001

    Directed byPeter Jackson

    The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring is a 2001 epic fantasy film directed by... more on Wikipediaamazon buy button
  • 4
    Shrek is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list The Best Movies Of The 2000s
    498
    192

    Shrek

    Cameron Diaz, Eddie Murphy

    Released2001

    Directed byAndrew Adamson, Vicky Jenson

    Shrek is a 2001 American computer-animated fantasy-comedy film produced by PDI/DreamWorks,... more on Wikipediaamazon buy button

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  • 5
    The Departed is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list The Best Movies Of The 2000s
    675
    326

    The Departed

    Leonardo DiCaprio, Jack Nicholson

    Released2006

    Directed byMartin Scorsese

    The Departed is a 2006 American crime drama film directed by Martin Scorsese, and a remake of... more on Wikipediaamazon buy button
  • 6
    Finding Nemo is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list The Best Movies Of The 2000s
    608
    233

    Finding Nemo

    Ellen DeGeneres, Willem Dafoe

    Released2003

    Directed byAndrew Stanton, Lee Unkrich

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  • 7
    Gladiator is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list The Best Movies Of The 2000s
    739
    370

    Gladiator

    Russell Crowe, Joaquin Phoenix

    Released2000

    Directed byRidley Scott

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  • 8
    Fight Club is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list The Best Movies Of The 2000s
    624
    250

    Fight Club

    Brad Pitt, Jared Leto

    Released1999

    Directed byDavid Fincher

    Fight Club is a 1999 film based on the 1996 novel of the same name by Chuck Palahniuk. The... more on Wikipediaamazon buy button

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  • 9
    Up is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list The Best Movies Of The 2000s
    610
    344

    Up

    Christopher Plummer, Ed Asner

    Released2009

    Directed byPete Docter

    Up is a 2009 American 3D computer-animated adventure comedy-drama film produced by Pixar... more on Wikipediaamazon buy button
  • 10
    The Lord of the Rings: The Two is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list The Best Movies Of The 2000s
    822
    468

    The Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers

    Cate Blanchett, Ian McKellen

    Released2002

    Directed byPeter Jackson

    The Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers is a 2002 epic fantasy film directed by Peter Jackson... more on Wikipediaamazon buy button
  • 11
    Catch Me If You Can is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list The Best Movies Of The 2000s
    214
    89

    Catch Me If You Can

    Leonardo DiCaprio, Amy Adams

    Released2002

    Directed bySteven Spielberg

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  • 12
    Kill Bill Volume 1 is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list The Best Movies Of The 2000s
    609
    355

    Kill Bill Volume 1

    Uma Thurman, Lucy Liu

    Released2003

    Directed byQuentin Tarantino

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  • 13
    The Incredibles is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list The Best Movies Of The 2000s
    392
    139

    The Incredibles

    Samuel L. Jackson, Holly Hunter

    Released2004

    Directed byBrad Bird

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  • 14
    Cast Away is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list The Best Movies Of The 2000s
    406
    204

    Cast Away

    Tom Hanks, Helen Hunt

    Released2000

    Directed byRobert Zemeckis

    Cast Away is a 2000 American adventure drama film directed and produced by Robert Zemeckis and... more on Wikipediaamazon buy button
  • 15
    WALL-E is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list The Best Movies Of The 2000s
    573
    355

    WALL-E

    Sigourney Weaver, Laraine Newman

    Released2008

    Directed byAndrew Stanton

    WALL-E is a 2008 American computer-animated science-fiction comedy film produced by Pixar... more on Wikipediaamazon buy button
  • 16
    Iron Man is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list The Best Movies Of The 2000s
    558
    324

    Iron Man

    Robert Downey Jr., Terrence Howard

    Released2008

    Directed byJon Favreau filmography

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  • 17
    The Dark Knight is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list The Best Movies Of The 2000s
    1,145
    850

    The Dark Knight

    Christian Bale, Michael Caine

    Released2008

    Directed byChristopher Nolan

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  • 18
    Gran Torino is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list The Best Movies Of The 2000s
    314
    176

    Gran Torino

    Clint Eastwood, Dreama Walker

    Released2008

    Directed byClint Eastwood

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  • 19
    Pirates of the Caribbean: The  is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list The Best Movies Of The 2000s

    Released2003

    Directed byGore Verbinski

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  • 20
    Donnie Darko is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list The Best Movies Of The 2000s
    327
    208

    Donnie Darko

    Drew Barrymore, Ashley Tisdale

    Released2001

    Directed byRichard Kelly

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  • 21
    Batman Begins is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list The Best Movies Of The 2000s
    487
    279

    Batman Begins

    Christian Bale, Michael Caine

    Released2005

    Directed byChristopher Nolan

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  • 22
    Spirited Away is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list The Best Movies Of The 2000s
    229
    111

    Spirited Away

    Miyu Irino, Bunta Sugawara

    Released2001

    Directed byHayao Miyazaki

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  • 23
    Casino Royale is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list The Best Movies Of The 2000s
    435
    175

    Casino Royale

    Alessandra Ambrosio, Eva Green

    Released2006

    Directed byMartin Campbell

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  • 24
    No Country for Old Men is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list The Best Movies Of The 2000s
    564
    425

    No Country for Old Men

    Javier Bardem, Tommy Lee Jones

    Released2007

    Directed byEthan Coen, Joel Coen

    No Country for Old Men is a 2007 American neo-western neo-noir thriller film directed by Joel... more on Wikipediaamazon buy button
  • 25
    Eternal Sunshine of the Spotle is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list The Best Movies Of The 2000s
    429
    324

    Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind

    Kate Winslet, Kirsten Dunst

    Released2004

    Directed byMichel Gondry

    Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind is a 2004 American romantic science-fiction comedy-drama... more on Wikipediaamazon buy button
FilmsFilmEntertainment2000s00s Movies